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I know quite a few of you are aware of this already from another thread, but I just wanted to post Jem's story here as well. Eight years ago this month, I went to a shelter wanting to adopt a kitten (as so many do) and found myself drawn to two adult kitties. They’d been there for several months with little interest and were to be adopted as a pair (which is difficult enough for kittens, but nearly impossible for adults). I went into meet them, and the orange & white kitty (then named Lollygag) immediately jumped on my lap and started giving me nose kisses and purring. The shelter worker said he was usually scared and cowering in the corner, so that was very unusual for him. I guess he found “his person” in me for whatever reason. His brother Scout was equally affectionate and immediately won me over. They have both brought immeasurable joy to my life. Jem has definitely been the most skittish kitty I’ve ever had, often retreating to my bedroom when the doorbell rings, there’s a knock at the door, or someone tears a piece of foil from the box, when there's a thunderstorm, and countless other seemingly harmless events. He has never been too friendly around guests (again, often retreating to my room to hide) as he was always terrified of outsiders. But with me, he has always been the sweetest, most loyal, goofiest, and loving boy. He was always patiently waiting by the door when I walk in, greeting me with his “prrrrts” and “ennnyyows”. He would follow me around the house, keep me company while I worked or watched TV, announce every evening when it was time to go to bed (promptly at 10:30), and gently wake me up each morning with paw pats and kisses. He’s most certainly never been a lap kitty or one to be held, but he loved nuzzling up next to me each night, "making biscuits" and drooling all over the blanket. And the best part of my day was lying next to him and falling asleep listening to him purr softly. Sadly, he was diagnosed with oral squamous cell cancer about 6 weeks ago after undergoing a terrifying series of visits to the vet, numerous diagnostic tests, overnight stays, and surgery. He was such a strong, brave boy throughout his ordeal and constantly amazed me with his resilience, exuberance, and fighting spirit. Even after all of what he’d been through, he was still my sweet, silly, playful boy until about a week ago. He gradually lost the interest to play, began sleeping more, and wouldn’t eat out of his dish anymore, so I had to feed him with my fingers. He eventually stopped eating all together over the weekend. I knew it was time to say goodbye to him and I did not want to see him suffer, but I agonized over the decision all weekend long. He passed away very peacefully in my arms this morning. I miss him more than words can possibly express, and am so grateful to have his brother Scout here with me so we can console each other. I know he will forever hold a very special place in my heart and always be my little “Peanut.” Rest in peace my precious, sweet boy.

 

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I'm in tears reading your post. I"m so very sorry. Thank you for giving him and his brother a wonderful life, and he did have a wonderful life with you. God knows, had you not saved him and his brother, who knows how long they would have been in the shelter or if ever adopted, and probably not been so together. You gave him a wonderful life, the best life that a cat can hope for, and he was able to know that kind of love for eight years. I am so heartbroken for you and for Scout. Rest in peace sweet little Jem.
 

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Jem, Special little guy...
May you forever have sunshine to bask in,
And many playmates to enjoy...
You are pain free and whole now...
At the Bridge...

Emily, Hugs for you...
You are not alone...
Sharon
 

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I'm so sorry Jem had to go, emily. I feel for you, I know it hurts. I wish I had something comforting to say.
Thank you for sharing his story, it was clear why the two of you loved each other so much.
 

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How sad. I must be ignorant because I didn't realize this was a good bye letter about Jem. It broke my heart - yet I've been through this so many times myself. I know how your heart must be breaking and how much you will miss this fellow. He was loyal, loving and everything a parent would want in a furbaby. You've been blessed - as was he to have found you. These little lives just don't last long enough do they?? ***hugs to you***
 

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These little lives just don't last long enough do they?? ***hugs to you***
No, they definitely do not. But we still choose to keep them in our lives despite the pain at the end. I know I'll hurt for a long time, but I wouldn't change having him in my life!

His brother Scout was a little sad/upset last night and was looking for Jem everywhere, but he's doing much better today. He's definitely lifted my spirits with his antics and cuddles.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
You were loved by a special boy...who was put in your life for a reason. Hope Jem finds my Pepper at the Bridge.
My first kitty was a Pepper too. :) She was a beautiful tortie. I got her when I was 2 and she lived to be 19! That was almost 20 years ago and I still think about her often. You never forget them...
 

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So sorry for your loss. Maybe our two kitties have found comfort. And just think all the story's they can tell each other.
 
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